Easter Rising commemoration events held

Irish president Michael D Higgins has laid in wreath at a remembrance ceremony held in the Republic of Ireland to mark the 100th anniversary of the Easter Rising.

The ceremony is part of a series of commemoration events this weekend.

Taoiseach (prime minister) Enda Kenny and Tánaiste (deputy prime minister) Joan Burton were also at the ceremony.

The president is due to meet relatives of those involved in the events of the Rising at a state event on Saturday.

The Easter Rising was a rebellion held in April 1916 to overthrow British rule in Ireland.

It was unsuccessful but is seen as a significant stepping stone to the eventual creation of the Republic of Ireland and the partition of Ireland.

The wreath-laying ceremony on Saturday took place at the Garden of Remembrance in Dublin.

The memorial garden is dedicated to people who fought for Irish independence from Britain.

The event began with a performance of The Parting Glass, a traditional Irish song, sung by the Island of Ireland Peace Choir.

After a wreath was laid by President Higgins, a minute’s silence was observed.

Relatives of 78 people who died during the Rising were also at the event and were invited to lay wreaths after the state ceremony had ended.

The event is part of the Republic of Ireland’s official commemoration programme.

Thousands of people are expected to take part in events throughout the Republic leading up to an Easter Centenary Parade on Sunday.

In an interview with the BBC, President Higgins said the Republic’s approach to the rising’s centenary was one of “ethical sensitivity” and that the event was of “immense significance”.

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